Ahead of the Senate vote to federalize elections, Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) hosted a press call to predict the outcome and explain her position against the bill. As Blackburn predicted on the call Tuesday morning, Senate Republicans blocked the bill.
On that press call, Blackburn told The Tennessee Star that local governments are better built to handle elections than the federal government.
“I think that those local election commissions are going to do a better job,” said Blackburn. “You know the government closest to you is the government that is the most transparent.”
Blackburn also laughed over The Star’s question as she postulated what individuals and states might have to endure if the federal government were to take over all election processes through the bill – the For the People Act.
“Does anyone think that the IRS, EPA, or OSHA are doing an efficient and effective job [and] doing it in a timely manner?” asked Blackburn. “We have so many individuals who have issues with federal agencies and we have so many local governments and state agencies and citizens who cannot get answers from federal agencies. Imagine what would happen if you had a federal election board? You would never get an answer from Washington, D.C.”
Blackburn claimed that Democratic leadership is insecure over their ability to pass this legislation. The senator shared confidently that Senate Democrats lacked the 16 votes needed – and that they knew it.
“I will tell you quite frankly that this is one of the things that makes them a bit nervous. One of the problems that the Democrats have with pushing this through, when you look at signatures and voter ID and drop boxes and ballot harvesting, is the fact that people went to social media this past year and they saw pictures of people holding up three to four ballots,” shared Blackburn. “They are starting to get pushback from people, from local elected officials, from county election administrators who are basically taking this personally, asking, ‘Why are they doing this? They do not trust us to operate our own elections.'”
According to Blackburn, the only reason House Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) put this bill up for a vote without support was for political gains.
“This is something about positioning for him. He is concerned that he is going to have a primary challenge from AOC [Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY)]. He is watching very closely what is happening on his left flank,” said Blackburn. “The left is really in charge of the Democratic Party. I have a lot of friends that are Democrats … and they are watching […] with distressed amazement of what has happened in the Democratic Party[.]”
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